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Place adverbs Posted by on May 24, 2010 in Spanish Grammar

Place adverbs in Spanish express the idea of proximity or distance. The list below shows the relation between proximity and distance.

Acá – aquí / allá – allí

1. aquí – acá – It means “here”.

Aquí están las entradas para el cine. (Here are the tickets to the movies.)

Acá indicates a less specific place than aquí. Because of this, it takes certain degrees of comparison that are not common when we use aquí: tan acá, más acá, muy acá. In some Latin American countries, acá replaces aquí.

Acá hace mucho frío en el invierno. (Here it’s very cold in the winter.)

2. allí – allá

Allí means “in that place”, “there”, “far from me and from you”.

Allí el clima siempre es muy malo. (The weather is always bad there.)

3. Allá indicates a less specific place than allí. It takes certain degrees of comparison that are not common when we use allí: tan allá, más allá, muy allá.

Besides being a place adverb, allá can refer to a past or future time, in a non-precise form.

Allá por los años 60 … (In the 60s … )
Allá por el año 2025 … (In 2025 … )

You can also use allá when you want to express lack of interest for someone or something.

Si no lo quieres, ¡allá tú! (If you don’t want it, that’s your problem!)

Nos vemos prontito.

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About the Author: Adir

English / Spanish teacher and translator for over 20 years. I have been blogging since 2007 and I am also a professional singer in my spare time.


Comments:

  1. Margaret Nahmias:

    So that real difference bewtween acá and aquí and allá and alli but you did not mention ahí

  2. Magda:

    Good point Margaret!

    When talking about distances, we can say that “ahí” is the intermediate place:
    aquí: very close to me
    ahí: not too far, not too close
    allí: far from my position
    Let us know if this explanation helped or do you have any more questions!